Blue Monday Mission
Reinforcing our Commitment
With the mission of providing life care services for aging, retired and elder musicians and artists in our community, Blue Monday takes place the 2nd Monday of every month at The Grouse Room in Lafayette, Louisiana. The event is a fabulous night of music with a top notch house band that features some of Acadiana's musical treasures. Each month we feature invited guest artists from our rich local music community and throughout the state as well as impromptu appearances and performances by members of our extended musical family. At Blue Monday Concert Series, we favor early evening show hours and boast a Blue Plate special dinner with a home cooked vibe that only Lafayette locals can provide! This is a locally based event and takes place only with the hard work of volunteers who strive to bring the best to all members of our community.
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Blue Monday Mission Synopsis
Meet The Blue Monday House Band
Lee Allen Zeno
Lee Allen Zeno grew up immersed in the Louisiana music scene. Having demonstrated a natural ability to cross the genres of blues, zydeco, gospel, country and soul music, Lee Allen became an in-demand bass player while still in his teens. Perhaps best known for his long tenure as the bass player for the Buckwheat Zydeco band, Zeno has also worked extensively as a session player, having recorded with Dalton Reed, Charlie Rich, Guitar Shorty, Lil’ Brian Terry, Clarence “Frogman” Henry, Jean Knight, Major Handy, Archie Bell, Barbara Lynn, Bobby Allen, Willie Cobbs, Leon Sam, Henry Gray, Lazy Lester, Chick Willis and many others. Lee can be found at various clubs from Lafayette to New Orleans, laying down grooves with Roddie Romero, Rockin’ Dopsie Jr., Major Handy, Zydeco Ray & the Creole Knight Riders, Henry Gray, as well as the Rue Boogaloo band, with Marty Christian. He also performed several times with two of our late heroes, Lil Buck Senegal and Carol Fran.
One word best describes New Orleans native and soul man Steve Adams... Mojo! Steve Adams has built quite the network over the years. Both a supreme vocalist and drummer, Steve Adams musical path spans several decades performing and sharing the stage and studio with several of Louisiana's greatest artists. Steve Adams has fronted for several legendary Louisiana bands including TK Hulin and The Boogie Kings. Adding to his impressive list, he has also played alongside Ernie K-Doe, Jessie Hill, Erma Thomas, Tommy Ridgley, Oliver Morgan, and Alan Toussaint. These days it's hard to mention Steve Adams without mentioning bass player and partner in crime Bill "Wild Bucky Brown" LeBlanc. Having been steeped in a lifetime of muddy water along with their prodigious musical knowledge, these two gentlemen have undoubtedly developed one of the strongest rhythm sections the south has ever seen. It's hard to play this many years with afore mentioned talent and not conjure up a lifetime of mojo and soul.
Jill Butler Merkl (aka “Jilly Jill” per Lee Allen Zeno!) combines soulful and sultry in a double threat combo of keyboard and vocal talent. This Jackson, MS native hails from deep musical roots – her father is a notable Nashville/Muscle Shoals R&B producer and one of the original owners of Malaco Records and her mother is a professional jazz crooner. Jill has been performing from a very early age with her family in venues across the country to hone in on her unique blues and jazz style. Once she moved to Louisiana, she was quick to latch onto the music scene and find her niche. Jill has performed with globally acclaimed Ellis Hall (of Tower of Power), Bob James and ECP Jazz Cruises, Atlanta Billboard jazz artist Dee Lucas, Myron Phauster, JALC’s Wess Anderson, Jamey Aebersold, and many of the brightest stars in Louisiana to include Connie G, Major Handy, Robert Richard, Mickey Smith, JB Saax, noteworthy Blue Monday featured artists Carol Fran, Marc Broussard, Roddie Romero, Michael Juan Nunez among many others. In addition to Blue Monday Allstars, you can catch Jill performing actively with The Collective Jazz Project and Smooth Like That. Jill recently had the privilege of performing on behalf of the legendary Carol Fran in AcA’s “Femme” tribute for Louisiana trailblazing female musicians.
August grew up in a small community called Bristol, in the state of Louisiana. Under the influence of his uncle, he began playing the guitar at the age of nine. During his teenage years, he worked with local r&b and top 40 cover bands. A few years later, he began recording and touring with various Louisiana bands, including Buckwheat, Rockin’ Sidney, Terrence Simien, Rosie Ledet, Keith Frank, Geno Delafose, Zydeco Force, and Beau Jocque. He has worked throughout the U.S., Western Europe, and Canada; performing r&b, zydeco, blues, jazz, and rock. His own group has been the opening act and/or back-up band for some of the biggest names in blues and r&b, including the late Bobby “Blue” Bland, Betty Wright, Marvin Sease, Little Johnny Taylor, Bobby Marchan, Tabby Thomas, Barbara Lynn, Patrick Henry and the LB Band, Kenny Wayne Landry, Lil’ Falley, and many more. He has performed at festivals that featured major stars, such as the late James Brown, Kool and the Gang, Morris Day and the Time, The Gap Band, Irma Thomas, the Neville brothers, and Elvin Bishop.
Blue Monday Allstars
Auxillary Members Who Can Be Seen At Many A Jam Sesh
Tony Goulas has grown his talent as an accomplished guitarist /singer/songwriter on stages from California to Florida and Canada to Louisiana. He's shared the stage with well-known blues, funk and soul acts such as Ohio Players, Edgar and Johnny Winter, Stone City Band, The Mary Jane Girls, Harold Melvin's Blue Notes, 3 Dog Night, The Grass Roots and The Boogie Kings. He's also performed live and as a session guitarist for various nationally known R&B, Blues and Gospel acts over the last thirty years. He also has his own musical accomplishments and through that has gained the respect of many in the industry and a fan base across the globe. In 2012 he released a solo original project, "Every Room Is Blue". In February 2011, Tony Goulas was recognized as a Grammy award winner for song writing on Chubby Carrier's hit "Zydeco Junkie". In 2014 Tony was inducted into The Louisiana Musicians Hall of Fame for his work with The Fabulous Boogie Kings.
Ron Eades lived in Muscle Shoals, AL, and was a founding member of the Muscle Shoals Horns. While primarily a studio musician he toured extensively with Elton John in the mid-70s, playing on the famed "Philadelphia Freedom" recording, which also featured John Lennon. His saxophone can be heard on the recordings of Joe Cocker, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Delbert McClinton and many others. Later in the 70s, the Muscle Shoals Horns released three albums of their own compositions which capitalized on the disco dance craze, and toured opening for groups such as Parliament-Funkadelic. Ron had performed with over 400 artists by 1981. These included such legendary talents as Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Percy Sledge, Wilson Pickett, The Oak Ridge Boys, Candy Staton, The Osmonds, Bob Dillon, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Rod Steward, Barbara Mandrell, and Dolly Parton. Ronnie recalls a time when the Muscle Shoals Horns were being heard on 5 hit records at the same time.